Dark Truth Stout | Boulevard Brewing Co.

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715 Reviews
Dark Truth StoutDark Truth Stout

Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co.
Missouri, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Throughout the ages, man has been fascinated by the quest for hidden knowledge, the search for the secret to transforming the elemental into the extraordinary, the simple into the sublime. Ladies and gentlemen, we present for your consideration this exotic, inky concoction, the almost magical creation of our modern day alchemists who have turned humble grains—barley, wheat, rye, and oats—into black, liquid gold. Layers of complex flavors slowly emerge from the glass: espresso, roasted fig, crème brulée. Belgian yeast provides a plum-like fruitiness, noble German hops reveal spicy, herbal notes, while the rich, velvety mouthfeel mellows to a dry, smoky finish.

60 IBU

Added by BradLikesBrew on 02-28-2010

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Reviews: 715 | Ratings: 2,488
Photo of JayReq
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I actually had this recommended by someone very cool, so I went out to Whole Foods and found it! I am glad I did. I drank from a small tasting glass (basically a miniature pint glass), and man, what an easy pour!

Appearance: Poured out almost silky smooth, it looks very thick and has a really nice deep pitch color. The pour produced a nice head, somewhat creamy in its texture, but the foam is a light-tan brown, like the color of wet sand.

Smell: Banana bread and nuts, believe it not, but I can't really place what kind. I can't really pick anything else up in the nose.

Taste: This is a rather complex stout. For a 9.7% Imperial Stout the alcohol is barely there, and it tastes a bit like darker rum. The banana bread is definitely under the rum, and there is a hint of burnt oat and hops, almost an ale-like quality in the latter. A little bit of a bite on the finish, which reminds the drinker that there is indeed alcohol in there. Very smooth and drinkable for stout fans, but I don't know if I would suggest this to first-timers.

Mouthfeel: Barely-there carbonation, which I like in my stouts. Very smooth, velvety on the tongue. Very nice. "Warming" is a good word, and warming usually means a good stout. Settles very nicely.

Overall: I really quite enjoyed this. It isn't a pinnacle beer, but it is a masterful expression of the style. Boulevard really made this a pleasure to drink. This is probably one of the best stouts I have had, period, and I will most likely pick it up again.

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Photo of mac31
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Intense entry of dark chocolate, smoky, chocolate maltiness. Sweet cooked caramel undertones with dark fruits (cherry) popping up from time to time. Ever so soft spiciness from the hops. Finishes pretty dry. Restrained Belgian esters. A bit boozy, 9.7% will do it. I get some ash as well, which adds a nice touch. Cereal grains in the finish. Carbonation is mild. Body is medium. After the first few sips and the palate has settles in, it's a pretty dam good beer. Very drinkable, gone before you know it. Definitely a different take on a stout, but all its parts work together harmoniously. A buddy gave me a couple bottles. I'm glad he did. I will definitely keep on my radar from now on.

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Photo of sprucetip
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into snifter.

Black, active, thick creamy tan head with good retention and thick lacing.

Roasty, smoky, some dark fruit, and heat. Malty sweetness just barely noticeable underneath.

Roasty flavors and bitterness are prominent but balanced well by the malty base, which imparts a hint of sweetness in the background. Vague notes of dark fruit add another layer of barely discernible depth.

Warm but not quite hot, with the tiniest sting from the carbonation. Full body with roasty bitter finish.

Very tasty and bold, relatively smooth for the style. Solid. If you like the style, it's certainly worth a try.

With the exception of the raisiny dark fruit elements, I didn't get the Belgian yeast character. And I definitely didn't find any German or other hops with all the bold roast.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked this up a few weeks back at Top Hops in New York, having never had this before. All of the beers that I've had from Boulevard have impressed me and this was no exception to that adage, as the complexity of it really came out once this warmed up. A few on here have mentioned that this was the marriage of a Stout and a Quad and that would be a perfect way to sum this up. The body and booze of the former were present along with the yeast and fruit notes of the latter and combined with the recessed alcohol, made for a beer that was worth savoring from start to finish.

Nice pour to this as the beer had a dark chocolate hue, amazingly frothy head, and nice web of lacing to it as I took my first sips. Not a strong aroma here but there was lots of currant and plum and some booze that cut through those. The barley and oats come out in the taste as the body really balanced out the strength of this beer quite nicely while the alcohol slowly came in after each sip went down. Dark bread and baker's chocolate round out the flavor profile while the lively carbonation was just an extent of the yeast that was underneath all of this, giving this beer a nice pop.

While not feeling as strong as I thought, this is not something to chug down as it took quite a while to sit back and enjoy. Creamy, lively, and deep, this was unlike any Stout that I've ever had, let alone a Double or an Imperial. Slightly roasted like a Coffee Stout and with some spice like a foreign tea, there's so much going on here that this should be in a new category since it seems to be a hybrid of a few other styles. Another winner fro Boulevard that I enjoyed immensely even if I didn't quite pinpoint it. A must-try for any dark beer lover!

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Photo of FanofHefe
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a Boulevard tulip; best by 7/27/13 - wow, I know stouts age well but this one must be pretty fresh. Deep, black body with no light getting through. BIG, four-finger mocha head, that, is much bigger in a stout than I expected. But, it does have good retention and lacing.

Excellent aroma: rich, dark malt and dark fruit dominate. But, accompanied by hints of chocolate and toffee and has the quality that I like to qualify as very inviting.

The flavor is a very good copy of the aroma with the dark malt, raisin, chocolate, and toffee flavors as well. A light smoky flavor blends in and a touch of bitterness from either the roasted malt or a bit of hops finishes the taste profile.

Medium to thick mouthfeel with a touch of the alcohol present. Solid stout that would very likely do well with age.

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Photo of BenHesk12
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Deep, dark, burnt molasses smoke with a more traditional mouthfeel and belgian yeast twist. Kind of incredible that this is a 9.7% alcohol beer! Especially when available at an average priced craft beer 4 pack

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Photo of GbVDave
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into three pint glasses. Thanks to Steve and Chris for the assist!

Batch Number/ 2010-1
Best By Date: 01/13

A: Intense black coffee pour. Dark khaki head. Very pillowy. Excellent retention and lace.

S: Heavily roasted malt, coffee, oats, milk sugar, bakers chocolate and dark overripe fruit.

T: See above with roasty malt, rich dark fruit, oats/milk sugar, and a slight Belgian yeastiness.

M: Very smooth. Coats well with a slight dryness during the long roasty finish.

D: Fantastic! No trace of ABV. Very nice, indeed.

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Photo of riored4v
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed on 3/19/10

Poured into a goblet. 3 finger, dense, tan head. Good lacing. Pitch black body.

Smell was molasses, coffee, burnt malt and no real standout sweetness. Good aroma although not real strong.

Flavor had some rasoted flavor with a subtle bitter finish that seems to come more from the malt than the hops. Some mild sweetness, molasses and coffee flavors. Some fruitness is present from the belgian yeast.

Mouthfeel had a medium body. Fairly high carbonation (seems a little high), somewhat dry finish. Silky mouthfeel.

Drinkability was good. No signs of ABV. Flavor is mellow enough to drink easily.

Overall this was a tasty stout. Nice complexity of flavors and the belgian yeast lends an interesting character.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Harpoon tulip glass.

The color is dark black with no highlights.Light is not penetrating any part of this beer that I can detect. The head is three and a half fingers of brownish/tan foam with some nice lacing left on the glass.

The smell has a little coffee aroma and has just a hint of dark chocolate. There are some black malt aroma here that has a brown bread-like aroma.

The taste is has a nice roasty flavor that presents itself with some volume. There is a bold malty push on the tongue that seems at first like it could be unpleasant but then settles into a nice smokey flavor that lets some of the plum and other dark fruit flavor come out.

This beer has a big feel to it at first and then eases up some toward the middle. The aftertaste lingers some with some but is not off-putting.

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Photo of BradLikesBrew
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

No. 14 in the Smokestack Series

Barley, Wheat, Rye, Oats
Belgian Yeast
German Noble Hops

Like the Collaboration Pils, this one looks great. Mocha head slowly settles depositing sheets of lacing. Jet black body.

The aroma is dark and roasty with hints of fig.

Well put together on the palate. A more restrained style of Imperial Stout, flavors are superbly integrated and balanced allowing one layer after another to just leave a kiss of flavor on the palate. First I get coca-cola and toffee before things turn dark, namely dark baking chocolate. It was planted in my mind by the description on the back of the bottle, but roasted figs and espresso really are appropriate descriptors. Plum is there too.

Beyond the generally less aggressive, more subtle path that this beer takes, I think the spicy quality of the yeast and hops lend a unique perspective. Rather than balance out the rich roasty malts with gobs of the hop bitterness (like Yeti or Ten Fidy) Dark Truth instead allows a lingering spice character to round things out.

Make that the 14th superb offering in the series. Guys, you're bating a 1000.

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Photo of ONUMello
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle best by 11/25/16 poured into a pint glass
A: Pitch black with a two-finger mocha-colored heat that lingers
S: Burnt malt, cocoa, espresso, a hint of hops
T: Matches the nowe with malt/cococa/coffee but also adds a nice toffee/caramel/molasses note as well
M: Big but balanced, a touch viscous but not hot
O: A solid Imperial Stout. The only thing that could make it better is if the hops were a bit more pronounced; the dark/malt notes are great

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Photo of alexk307
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Thick black with a nice head and nice lacing throughout

S: Not getting anything too overpowering. Sweet, and nutty.

T: Starts off by hitting you with a thick layer of smoke. Mellows out to almost an Oyster Stout with lots of malt. Lingering taste of walnuts and smoke.

M: A little thinner than most stouts but that's made up for by a little bit of extra carbonation

O: A great beer, glad I tried it. Definitely check this out if you like smokey beers.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into The Bruery tulip, dated 2010-1, 01-13. Grabbed this one before Boulevard pulled out of Tennessee several months ago.

Pours deep black, with a big, towering, rocky light brown head on top. Takes awhile to finish the pour, letting the head settle in between; nice retention, very good lacing. Head settles into a dense, one finger cap after a bit, with solid walls of lacing.

Nose is a bit of char, a bit of burnt sugar, hinting towards espresso and dark fruit. Alcohol comes through clearly; the Belgian yeast strain does a great job of this one, adding a hefty dose of fruitiness to the mix that mixes quite well. Very nice.

Taste is... pleasant, quite enjoyable. Dark fruits are clear, a bit of brown sugar, along with a lightly roasted malt character underneath that blends nicely. Alcohol never gets boozy, and isn't felt till it's on its way down while still adding just a bit of complexity. Finish is a bit more earthy roasted malt, more fruits on the exhale, hinting at molasses. Belgian yeast tends to simplify things down a bit, very fruity, but just roasty enough to balance. well done.

Mouthfeel is a bit thinner than expected thanks to the Belgian yeast strain, but with a bit of elevated carbonation to make up for things. Quite nice, and ridiculously drinkable - the fruitiness goes a long ways towards hiding the alcohol.

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Photo of tweke
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L - dark dark brown almost black in color with a thin head.
S - smells like a Belgian but added smokiness
T - smokey and malty with the finish of a Belgian
F - crisp and dry finish, doesn't cost your mouth like some of the heavier stouts. Smokey but refreshing.
O - a great stout if you are looking for smokey and Belgian notes. Finishes crisp and dry. Overall really enjoyed this after dinner.

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Photo of ratedz
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Boulevard tulip glass. Batch 2010-1. Pours pitch black with a 2-3 finger tall tan colored head. The head is very slow to dissipate, which works out since I want the beer to warm up a little bit anyway.

Smell is over roasted malts and yeast. Some dark fruits and chocolates are mixed in there too.

The taste backs up the nose...dark fruits mixed in with roasted malts. The flavor profile reminds me of a Belgian stout more than an American imperial stout. Very tasty, just not was I was expecting from the style.

Mouth feel is smooth and lightly carbonated, but a tad on the thin side for an imperial stout.

Even at just under 10%, this beer is very drinkable. Because it is a tad on the thin side, it is easier to drink quickly than some of the thicker beers of the style. Another fantastic beer in the Smokestack series from Boulevard!

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Photo of PorterLambic
4.14/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with a short-lived tan head "hat leaves no lace.
Smell is rich with toasted malt, molasses, dark fruits. Great balance.
Taste is roasted malt, molasses, soy sauce, rum, and smoke. Phenomenally well balance.
Lighter body than expected, maybe medium. Effervescence is a bit fizzy but very good. Warming with a dry finish.

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Photo of leroybrown10
4.14/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep dark brown, almost black. Fluffy khaki colored head receded quickly. No lacing left behind.

Aroma of roasted malt, espresso, smoke and some earthy/peaty hops. Some black cherry and ripe plum.

Taste is identical to the aroma. Roasted(almost burnt) malt and espresso to start. Some dark bitter chocolate and dark fruits. Smoke and salt reminiscent of an Islay whisky.

Rich, full bodied mouth feel. Moderate carbonation. Very dry on the tongue. Bitterness lingers.

Another excellent beer from Boulevard's Smokestack Series. Rich aroma and flavor. Some notes that brought a smoky/peaty scotch to mind. Perhaps a touch too bitter.

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Photo of mchegash
4.14/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L: Dark dark brown, lots of medium-dark beige head. Lots of little particles visible in the beer make it look kind of gross (they're only visible if you hold it up to the light).

S: Strong candied fruit flavors. Not at all what I was expecting. Smells more like a Belgian Tripel or Quad than a stout. Delicious aroma though.

T: Tastes like it smells. I don't really detect any complexity beyond the candied fruit. So it tastes like a Belgian Dubbel/Tripel/Quad. very good taste, but not at all stout-like. If you like Tripels, you'll like this, but if you're looking for a typical stout, stay away.

F: Full bodied, medium-high intensity carbonation. A little syrupy.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
4.14/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Type: 12-oz. bottle
Glass: 0.5L glass
From: Bine & Vine Bottle Shop in Normal Heights (San Diego), Calif.
Price: $8.99 for a 4-pack
Purchased: Jan. 29, 2014
Consumed: Jan. 31, 2014
Misc.: Best by Sept. 3, 2015

Poured a pitch black color with 2-to-3 fingers of frothy dark tan head. Above average-to-good lacing along the sides. Great retention on the top all the way down.

Smelled a pleasant whiff of dark sour fruits, sour cherry, plum, cocoa, chocolate, caramel, toffee and some roastiness. But really the sour fruits dominate.

Tasted not really much like the smell. First was buttery dark malts. Also toffee, caramel, dark sour fruits, cocoa, smoky woodfire, plum, black cherry and chocolate.

Medium-to-full body. Slick texture. Average carbonation. Long, smooth finish.

Just a fantastic beer. Loved every part of this.

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Photo of glid02
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle via Brodie.

Pours black with a one-finger tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of lightly roasted malts with good amounts of dark chocolate and lighter amounts of light yeastiness - mildly bready aromas with hints of dried bananas. As the beer warms moderate amounts of plum and date aromas make brief appearances.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. The roasted malts share equal billing with dark chocolate flavors up front and are joined quickly by good amounts of dark fruit flavors - plums and figs as with the aroma. Midway through the sip the fruit flavors are joined by lighter banana flavors that quickly fade to let the roasted malt flavors carry through to a solidly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a smooth thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have a few more.

Overall I found this to be a fairly complex and well done big stout. The yeast was a nice addition to a solid beer - be sure to give this one a shot.

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Photo of lnashsig
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

I'm really falling in love with Boulevard Brewery. Some amazing stuff coming out of this creative force in Kansas City Missouri- especially the Smokestack Series. Has yet to disappoint me.

Poured into my dfh Snifter, a midnight black completely opaque pour, that immediately rushes out a dark tan frothy head that fills the glass before I can get the whole beer out of the bottle (12 oz bottle). Smell- dark fruits, belgian yeast, currants, chocolate. Taste- big dark sweet fruits first, chocolate, currants, big belgian flavors, with a bittersweet chocolate finish. I have a hard time classifying this as an Imperial Stout, I would actually like to categorize it in the Belgian Stout category. The Belgian fruit flavors are very obvious here, and it is almost completely void of the hoppy flavors you would expect from an Imperial Stout.

Mouthfeel: this is a chewy beast- appropriate and enjoyable for the style, with good carbonation.

Drinability: my only knock on this beer- you get some big alcohol heat that makes this one a one-and-done. it will probably take me over an hour to finish this beer (and thats not a bad thing- it has already improved with a little warmth on it.

Yet another masterpiece from Boulevard- one of the most under-rated breweries out there in my opinion, and they are bringing some creativity to the craft beer scene.

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4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into Bruges tulip; Best by date:04.07.13 ; served at cellar temp.

A: A slow pour, develops a foamy two and a half finger khaki head. The retention is very good and holds a monster head the whole glass through. The body is a typical stout jet black. Carbonation is low, but present, very well represented for style. The lacing is left in full sheets on the side of the glass.

S: The aroma shows a majority of roasted character, with high levels of bitterness. The hops seem to be used for the high alpha acid content, while leaving the aroma with a bitter tone. The hints at smokey chocolate, with notes of a damp forest.

T/M: the initial taste is high in Russian Imperial Stout character, with high bitter profile and rich malt undertones. A very warm and welcoming alcohol note, that shows the ABV, but still adds a good balance of flavors. The Belgian yeast adds a wonderful spicy note of esters, in a typical roasted dominated style. The complexity of all flavors are balanced, while still being robust in the specific character. The mouthfeel is medium thickness for style, and low levels of carbonation are well played on all aspects of this brew.

O: Overall this is a very unique Stout and I have been very impressed with it. The blend of American stout, with German hops and Belgian yeast is a very creative idea and the beer represents that.

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Photo of n2185
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours black with three fingers of tan head that fades into a thick ring with great lacing.

S: roasted malts up front followed by lots of sweet molasses and dark chocolate aromas. Creamy coffee with some char notes bring up the finish. Smells great.

T: strong toasted malt flavors at first, with dark chocolate flavors following. There are some roasted coffee notes along with lightly bitter char flavors on the finish.

M: thick body with medium carbonation, this beer is more carbonated than most imperial stouts, but it goes well with the bitterness of the beer.

O: a good imperial stout, overall. Nice and roasty with a great aroma.

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Photo of yamar68
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle to snifter:

Pours a near pitch black with plentiful dense mocha froth to cap things off. Perfect lacing, like a timeline of tonight's drinking.

Crazy mix of aromas - burnt wood, dark chocolate, cocoa nibs, subdued hops, subtle dark fruit, brown sugar.

The flavors are equally impressive - milk chocolate, charred oak, harsh vanilla, simple syrup.

This is a great beer. Tons of complexity, tons of potential in the cellar.

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Photo of mtomlins
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep black with two fingers of tan head with decent retention and good lacing. The nose is nice roasted grain, raisins and some char. The taste is sweet and roasted at first then comes bitter char, tobacco, burnt coffee, black cherries and a bit smokey. The mouthfeel is full and round with nice carbonation. This is not a stout I would drink often, but it makes for an interesting, complex sipper.

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Dark Truth Stout from Boulevard Brewing Co.
3.95 out of 5 based on 2,488 ratings.
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